Maintaining Wellbeing at University…

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Bonjour!

So taking care of your mental health may not be on the top of your list of priorities at university. However, having recently graduated, looking back, I wish I had known when I started uni that my own mental health should have come before anything else.

At the start of my final year at university, I was diagnosed with anxiety disorder, having frequent panic attacks which affected every aspect of my life. I found that I was missing lectures regularly due to the fact that I just didn’t want to get out of bed in the morning. Throughout university I always felt as if I wasn’t good enough and that I was the worst performing on my course, actually I always felt this way at school too. But skipping lectures made me panic even more about this in the long-term. I won’t try and tell current students how to be mindful and offer advice on how to be the least-stressed and happiest student that ever lived, because I was never that. However, I will tell you what worked for me and how I managed to get from duvet-cocooning on Monday’s to my graduation day.

  1. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Your academic ability can only stretch so far, just like your physical and your mental abilities. If you feel like your workload is getting too much and you’re on the verge, then stop. Take a moment to focus on what is important and what you need to do to make it right. If you don’t understand a topic, work through it slowly, get help or just leave it! It’s not the end of the world.
  2. If you feel like you need to take time off to unwind, do it. Preferably do this when you haven’t got lectures to attend, but studying and writing 24/7 is not the way to properly take care of your mental health. You need time to reflect and relax, and don’t feel guilty about it!
  3. It was important to me to have another aspect of my life that wasn’t uni. I worked full time as a secondary school teaching assistant whilst at university. At times it definitely want easy but it gave me an escape and another reason to get up in the morning. When I was at work (I love my job so that helps) I was able to forget about the mountains of coursework I had to complete at home and focus on a whole other side to myself.
  4. Sleep! Sleep is one of the most important thing you can get when at university. Set up a sleep schedule, for example, going to bed at 11pm and waking up at 7am. NOT grabbing two hours at 3am!
  5. Organisation is SO important. I discovered in my first year that a wall planner is a life saver! Write down all of your presentation dates, when things are due and lectures. Having a diary or planner (and things written in it) to refer to means that you’ll never miss any imporatant dates and nothing will come as a shock. Also, on the topic of organisation, packing your bag he might before is, granted, a bit secondary school, but you’ll be glad of the extra ten minutes in bed in the morning. And you won’t be rushing out the house, shoving who-knows what in your rucksack.

Really, to me, the most important thing to make sure you’re doing whilst at uni is to take care of your mental health. If you can do that properly, then everything else can fall into place. Taking time out and being aware of how you’re feeling is super important. I think awareness is key to keeping happy and healthy. Actually stopping, reflecting and asking yourself ‘how do I feel today? What is my frame of mind?’ And then being aware of days when you’re feeling particularly delicate or on-edge and addressing it.

There’s nothing to be ashamed of with regards to feeling low or stressed out or just plain frazzled. The stigma that comes with mental health is disappearing and speaking out and making, not only yourself, but people who care about you aware of your mind-set will only help to put you on the right path. Hopefully these simple little tips will help to maintain or improve wellbeing during arguably the hardest, but best, years of your life.

Emily

Xoxo

Graduation And How I Got There!

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When I was in school, I was always the ‘middle of the road’ student. I wasn’t particularly clever or not, but looking back, I doubted myself so much. Actually, I was in top sets for most of my classes, I wasn’t getting A*’s but I was getting B’s. My problem was, my friends were all so clever and they were getting the top grades. I found myself clinging onto them and relying on them to tell me when our next test was, the answers to the homework and how to plan an essay. This only got me so far and by sixth form they’d become pretty fed up of me. My grades were falling from B’s to D’s in A Level and I gave up completely on the idea of university while my friends were still maintaining their straight A’s. My tutor and some of my friends were telling me to apply for uni, but I was just so convinced I wasn’t good enough. Okay, I thought, I might be able to get in, but I would no way be able to pass any of the work. 

Looking back, I wish I could tell myself how much better I was than I thought. I really underestimated myself and there is no way I ever imagined I would be standing up on stage one day being handed a university diploma with an upper second class honours degree in Creative Writing with English Literature.

Although I continued with my old habits in the first year; relying on friends to get me through. It wasn’t until I passed first year with a similar grade to my friends that I realised I could do it myself. Okay, so maybe I only just scraped a 2:1, but so what? who cares? The fact is I did it and 15 year old GCSE-fretting me cannot believe it.

The graduation ceremony was amazing. My parents cried, my grandparents came too, and my sister, and I was the first Hull to ever go to university and get a degree. I am so proud of what I’ve achieved in my time at university, as well as my friend too. I have made the best, life-long friends at uni who I know will always be there for me. If you can go through that together, you can definitely get through anything together, is what I say!

University was no easy feat for me. I had to work full time as a Teaching Assistant in order to fund my study, as well as attend lectures and undertake the course full time. Balancing a potential career and high level education took its toll and in early 2017 I was diagnosed with severe anxiety and panic attacks. My anxiety has really changed who I am as a person. Whilst I used to be travelling all over the country to see bands and camp out to meet them and go on day trips to London, I don’t do any of that anymore. Panic attacks have stopped me from doing the things I absolutely love and once considered a hobby. Whereas now I feel that all I do is go to work, sleep and repeat, I hope that one day I will be able to overcome this anxiety in the same way I overcame my self-doubt about university.

So really, what I’m saying is, if you ever feel like you can’t do something, just give it a try. And then, when you manage to do it you’ll look back on yourself and regret doubting yourself so much…

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it.

Emily

xoxo

p.s. I’ll leave you with some pics from my grad!

I’ve Been Nominated For The Liebster Award!

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Thank you for nominating me for the Liebster Award. I have nominated 11 blogs for the same award, the rules are as follows…

1) Acknowledge the blog who nominated you for this award.

2) Answer 11 questions the blogger gave you.

3) Give 11 random facts about yourself.

4) Nominate 11 blogs.

5) Notify them.

6) Give them 11 questions to answer. 

So, here goes with my answers… 

1. What is a moment in your life that changed the rest of your life forever?
When I got accepted to university! I spent all of my school life being on ‘average’ grades (turns out B’s aren’t average and my friends were just brainiacs). But for once in my life I was proud of myself and believed I was actually maybe a tiny bit clever. 
2. Since your first blog post, have you learned anything? What was it? 

I’ve learnt how lovely the blogging community is! I’ve made so many friends, and I only have ninety-something followers!

3. If you could give any piece of advice right now, what would you say?

Don’t live your life for other people. Do what you want to and make yourself happy. Don’t worry about what other people are doing or what seems ‘right’. There is no right and wrong, there is only what works for you. 

4. What kind of mark would you like to leave in someone’s life?

I want people to say that I am a good friend and I’m fun to be around. 

5. Are there any regrets you feel right now? Could you mend them if you were able to?

I don’t think I have any regrets, but if I did I would certainly try to fix them. 

6. What was your favorite childhood movie or book growing up?

The first Harry Potter book came out when I was 6 and the films followed. They are my childhood. 

7. Do you like playing games? What is your favorite game?

Yaaaas!! I loooove games, especially bored games. I love this board game called Obama Llama, a rhyming/celebrity-based board game. Give it a go if you’ve never tried it! 😆

8. What is your favorite food to eat? 

CHOCCIE!!

9. What could you go without for a month? (Choose something that wouldn’t be easy)

I could honestly go without my phone for a month. I feel like it’s attached to my hand for pure convenience, but I grew up without that convenience. I could probably do it if I needed to, and sometimes a part of me wants to!

10. Who in your life has made a lasting impression?

My uni friends. There’s something to be said for friends who saw you through the toughest time of your life. 

11. If you could do one small thing to help another person today, what would it be?

Tell all the people that read my blog that I am always available to talk to. 



11 random facts about me:

  • I have hyper mobility in my thumbs so they bend back on themselves. It’s a great party trick. 
  • I have loads of friends over the age of 40 who have kids my age…
  • I am not naturally blonde (!)
  • I love my cat but I want a pug. 
  • I have been driving for four years!
  • The Killers are my fave. 
  • I used to love 1D and I’ve seen them live 5 times. 
  • I live in Devon on the edge of Dartmoor and I’m also near the sea which I love!
  • There’s nothing I love more than Christmas. 
  • I am a teaching assistant in a secondary school so I work with 11-18 year olds and I love it. 
  • I live in pyjamas. 

Thank you to https://nobledevotionblog.wordpress.com/ for nominating me for this award!

My nominated blogs:

https://justhannahhere.wordpress.com/

https://gluecksgeist.wordpress.com/

https://confessionsonmychalkboard.wordpress.com/

https://randomthoughtsbyhaya.wordpress.com/

https://theweekendjuice.wordpress.com/

https://diversion3000.wordpress.com/

https://futurenursea.wordpress.com/

https://abrashattitude.com/

http://thestyleoflaurajane.com/

https://simplynata.com/

https://caitlincx.wordpress.com/
Emily

Xoxo

Halloween/ Christmas Haul!

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Bonjour!

I think I may have peaked too soon, guys… I have basically nearly finished my Christmas shopping. And now I’ve started on decorations. The only thing I haven’t got is presents for my parents and a tree…

I feel like when it comes to December I’m going to be sick of the entire Christmas season, but for now, it’s great! Also, Halloween is UPON US. My friend and I took to Poundland, Hobby Craft and B&M to feed our excitement for the autumn and approaching winter, and here is the result:

Let’s start with Poundland. I can’t believe how much I got in here for £6! (6 things believe it or not…)


I mean… pumpkin lights. Can you even go wrong? They’re battery powered which kinda sucks, but they’ll only be one for one evening so hopefully should last. HOW CUTE???


These are my fave things I bought. They’re skeleton and a pumpkin tea light holders, A POUND EACH. They’re ceramic and everything and I just love them lots. 


The last Halloween thing I got from Poundland are the sweets for the trick or treaters. I love having themed sweets and not just your bog-standard drum sticks. These are eye-ball lollipop and Casper marshmallows- yaaaas!!

Okay, onto B&M and Christmas! If you don’t have a B&M near you, I can only sympathise. It’s a beautiful place. Especially for cheap little seasonal things that’ll spend most of the year in the loft. 


I am soooo happy with this purchase. I got 100 multicoloured Christmas lights for £5.99! And they’re plug-in ones which just makes me super happy. I just tried them out and believe me when I say they’re beautiful. 


And lastly, can you really go wrong with a box of candy canes for £1? I think not. 

Hope you enjoyed this post and that you’re just as excited about Christmas as I am!!

Happy holidays! (Too soon?)

Emily

Xoxo

How To Save Your Dirty White Converse! A Life Hack. 

lifestyle

Bonjour!

So I’ve recently discovered a thing and it’s amAZING. I have a pair of white converse boots, and a pair of white shoes too (I haven’t done this to my shoes… yet!). But they get soooo dirty and £45 is a lot to be paying out every six months for a new pair!

If you have a similar problem, then I hope this blog post will save your actual life (like it saved mine… well, my converse’s anyway). 

Here’s what my shoes looked like before…


They seemed to be covered in black marks and, I don’t know if you do this too, I generally put my shoes on after doing my make-up so they seem to have orange marks on them… oops. 

Shall we start? 

  • So what you need to do first is rinse the shoes and get them slightly damp. I just ran them under the tap. 
  • Then, mix up a solution of detergent (any will do) and bicarbonate of soda at a ratio of 1.5:1. In other words, half as much detergent as baking soda. 
  • Get a tooth brush or scrubbing brush and start scrubbing! Make sure you get all of the shoe including the rubber parts. 
  • After this, just rinse the shoes under the tap to get the grains of soda off. 
  • Then just throw them into the washing machine!
  • Annnnnd you’re done! Leave them to dry and viola!


Let me know if you give this a go. You’re welcome in advance! 😉 

Emily

Xoxo

Blogtember Day #30- Work Primark Haul!!

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Bonjour! 

For the last day of September, I went shopping to get some more clothes for work (I barely have any)! Sorry if it’s not very exciting but some bits are lovely and autumn-y so stay tuned! 

Okay, so this first item is not for work (great start, Em) but I just had to get it. It’s a really cosy and soft jumper with Beauty and the Beast embroidered characters. £15, so not the cheapest thing Primark has ever sold, but cute and kinda worth it. 

Next is a very un-exciting black pencil skirt. It’s kind of a t-shirt material so it’s stretchy, which makes it a lot easier to move about in, hopefully! This one was £5 and goes with everything, right?

Staying with the bottom half, I picked up a pair of navy blue cropped smart/work trousers. They’re a lovely fit and look smart for work, so you can’t really go wrong. And thy have pockets- hurrah!!

I was, at first, disgusted with the very notion of roll-neck jumpers in Primark. I actually picked this one up by accident and threw it back down in disgrace. However, I thought about it for a bit and thought how lovely it would look with a scarf and a pair of loose fitting trousers, like the ones above, for work. So I went for it. I’ve yet to try it out in the work environment and get a teenager’s verdict, but I like it. 


I absolutely love this shirt, but again, I don’t know how it’ll work in practice just yet. It’s such a lovely baby pink shade with a breast pocket and pearls sewn onto the collar. Simple and so cute. And only £5!


Can you ever have too many scarfs for work in the winter? I literally live in them. This one is soooo cute. It’s a navy blue with gold stars all over it. I am in love with it. And it looks so expensive! £4. 

Okay, so these next two aren’t from Primark, but I thought I’d share them with you anyway. They’re the same style (I actually already have a beige one), one is yellow and one is bright orange. 

They’re from H&M and only £8.99, but they’re such a lovely fit. I wore one to work yesterday and got so many compliments! And the colours are so so so lovely for autumn! I’m kind of happy Halloween is on a work day, so I can wear the orange one then! 🙂 
Hope you enjoyed this post, and all of my posts throughout Blogtember! I’m sad to be seeing Blogtember coming to an end, but it’s just got me more excited about Blogmas!!! Obviously I’ll be posting before then, so stay tuned and in touch! Thank you for all your support, reads, likes and comments throughout the month- love you lots!

Emily

Xoxo

Blogtember Day #29- 7 Every Day Make Up Essentials. 

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Bonjour!

For day 29, I thought I’d share my list of seven make up items I can’t possibly live without and wear every day. 

  • Rimmel 25 Hour liquid foundation and Collection Lasting Perfection concealer. 

  • Collection pressed powder and Too Faced Glow face palette. 

  • Too Faced Sweet Peach eye shadow palette 

  • Collection colonising mascara and Collection pressed brow powder. 

The loves I cannot live without!

Emily

Xoxo